Cheeky Aussie ambush in stump mic sabotage

AUSSIE players invoked the humour of Adam Gilchrist as they sought to have the last laugh with local broadcasters who insist on keeping stump microphones turned up.

Spiels of ambush marketing hit the airwaves from Durban with the Australians cheekily spruiking free plugs for their sponsors Qantas and XXXX in a bid to upset the applecart and force the mute button to be pressed.

Television broadcasters Super Sport who control the stump mic volume ignored International Cricket Council guidelines and Australian requests on turning the sound down between deliveries.

All day the sound was cranked up.

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This approach has long annoyed Australian teams who feel it's a ploy designed to trip them up and catch banter and comments on the field that could bring about fines from the ICC.

Less than two years ago in a one-day international in South Africa, Aussie opener Aaron Finch was pinged for dropping a swear word on-field that was put to air by Super Sport.

According to commentators, the tourists were on day two captured joking with the umpires about flying Qantas, and after initially being taken aback by the comment, the match officials played along and swore their allegiance to ICC major sponsors and Qantas rivals, Emirates.

Australian players were also heard giving XXXX free advertising - rather than South Africa's Castle Lager keeping fans lubricated on the hill.

Back in 2006, Adam Gilchrist led a counter-attack strategy where he plugged major sponsors Travelex, Milo and Castrol, with "Come on Bing (Brett Lee), one for the boys at Travelex now" one of the scripts.

It was described as a 'player protest' by the Australian management.

Mitchell Marsh denied the hijinks was a protest, but rather a prank designed to poke fun at the situation.

"I wouldn't say it was a protest, I'd say it was a great opportunity to give our sponsors a bit of a plug," said a joking Marsh.

"Qantas, thank you for getting us here safely. The stump mics really for us as players on the field are irrelevant, it's about us as a team getting the ball in the right areas and we don't really worry about that, it was a bit of a joke to give the sponsors a bit of a plug."

The sledging on field on day two appeared tame and lighthearted the whole way through, with reminders given to AB de Villiers that he often doesn't convert half centuries and a gentle ribbing of Quinton de Kock for only wanting to play Twenty20 cricket summing up the mood of the Australians.

"It was quite nice today. They were very friendly compared to last time," said de Villiers.

"It's the usual stuff. We expect some verbal stuff out there when you're playing cricket in general. It gets the juices flowing. I particularly enjoy it.

"And from the other side, we also get stuck in and try and unsettle the batters. It's part of the game."

News Corp Australia

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